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Archive for the tag “Richelle Mead”

The Fiery Heart – by Richelle Mead

FieryOh yes, the fourth book in Mead’s fantastic Bloodlines spinoff series is finally here! I went in to this book with high expectations, since I really enjoy Mead’s work in general (for example, Gameboard of the Gods, and The Indigo Spell). I’m really invested in Sydney and Adrian’s story now – as are we all – and I was counting on Mead to deliver a cracker of an installment. Here’s how I thought she did:

Sydney and Adrian have come a long way since they were first forced to work together. No longer is Sydney the standoffish, distrustful Alchemist, and no longer is Adrian the dissolute, oft-drunk mess he once was. Well, mostly, anyway. Truth be told, they’re been more than tolerating each other for a long time, now.

Oh, Sydrian. I love ’em. And they’re finally getting it right.  Which is a good thing – because they’re facing a whole lot of problems that they can’t fix alone. In fact, they might not even be able to fix them together. I Fell Into A Burning Ring of Fire

Gameboard of the Gods – by Richelle Mead

gameboardAs you may already know, I’ve been a Richelle Mead fan since the first time I picked up Vampire Academy. What you mightn’t know is that I’ve tried and failed to read her previous adult paranormal fiction. The succubus series really never grabbed me, which was disappointing given how good Vampire Academy is.

I went in to reading Gameboard of the Gods, Mead’s newest novel, a dystopian/sci-fi adult novel that’s the first in her new “Age of X” series, with some trepidation. Ha! Completely unfounded. Gameboard of the Gods is fantastic. Here’s why:

Meet Mae Koskinen. She’s not just any law enforcement officer. Mae is a Praetorian. These elite, enhanced warriors are the pinnacle of the Runa’s armed forces – as terrifying as they are effective. Caught In the Storm:

Top Ten Books I Thought I’d Like More (Or Less) Than I Did

top ten

Hosted by the awesome folks as The Broke and the Bookish, Top Ten Tuesdays is a weekly meme celebrating all things book.

Today we’re looking for books you really wanted to love – but didn’t. And books you expected to loathe – but didn’t. These are the top ten books I though I’d like more (or less) than I did.

bronte

Because no. I read Wuthering Heights thinking “Really? THIS is a classic romance??” Huge let down given how widely this gothic novel is worshiped.

Vampire Academy

I know this keeps coming up on my lists! But really. Given the cover and the slew of vampire fiction available when VAcademy was released, I grabbed it as another waste-of-a-couple-of-hours read. And since then I (evidently) can’t shut up about how fantastic the series and Richelle Mead in general are. (PS – keep an eye out for my review of Gameboard of the Gods. This book is gonna be BIG. Because it’s amazing.)

next doorI have nothing against My Life Next Door – it was a perfectly nice coming of age YA romance. But that’s all. It didn’t stand out at all for me. And with the hype I’d been hearing about it, I really expected it to.

Rosie

On the other hand, The Rosie Project seemed like a silly romantic-comedy-in-a-book. But it was so much more! Smart, funny and a gorgeous read.

glass

Ugh. I was deeply unimpressed by Throne of Glass – and I realise I’m in the minority here. Caelena didn’t grab me at all, and the plot was confused by too many angles. I don’t get the hype.

peculiar

Whereas The Peculiar, a steampunk faerie novel set in 1920s London, was SO GOOD. I couldn’t have anticipated how much I’d love this unassuming story. Read it read it read it!

Uninvited

Yeah. I liked this crime novel a lot – until it devolved into a mystic, paranormal thriller halfway through with no warning. Pick your market.

revolution

Holy up-until-3am read, Batman! This book is the definition of an addictive read. I completely drowned out the voice that tells you to go to sleep in favour of finishing Revolution as fast as possible. An engrossing story, and beautifully written.

thief

Look, The Book Thief was okay. It was good, even. But it’s never been one of those books that changed everything for me, and it is to so many other people I’ve talked to.

promise

You know what? If you’re looking for an intelligent, creepy, taut crime novel, don’t be as surprised as I was when you have a ball with Promise. It’s the best crime I read in 2012. (And the sequel’s no slouch, either!)

Friends, readers, tell me, share with me those books that let you down, or the ones that yanked you up with a WOAH!

Top Ten Characters (and Literary Figures) That I’d Name My Children After

top ten

Hosted by the awesome folks as The Broke and the Bookish, Top Ten Tuesdays is a weekly meme celebrating all things book.

This week, it’s all about great characters with great names. Names that you like enough to potentially inflict on your children. These are the top ten characters/literary peeps that I’d theoretically name my kids after:

Let me preface this by saying I met a guy called Oberon the other day. Hem. And that’s not what I’m looking to inflict on my theoretical children. (Mostly…)

finalempire

I don’t think I could call my daughter Vin. But I love the name Elend for a boy. Although, again, probably not Kelsier for a boy. Also, have you read the Mistborn series yet? If you love high fantasy with strong characters, a plot that just keeps escalating when you don’t believe it can, and hands-down the best magic system I’ve ever seen – what are you waiting for?! SO GOOD.

Sabriel

I’ve always wanted to call a kid Sabriel. Or maybe Lirael? They’re just lovely names! And the fact that this is a less well-known series means not too many people would get the connection, and I’d just be really cool. Right?!

Crown2

In a series the size of Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time there are going to be a fair few character names to choose from. For my part, I’d be happy with a girl called Egwene or Nynaeve, or even Moiraine (I actually love Moiraine!) But not so impressed with a boy called Rand. Or Perrin. Or even Lan – way too easy to tease people called Rand or Lan!

scent

Avry is an excellent name! For an AMAZING character. And I’d love it – for a girl or a boy. I also think Loren and Quain are awesomesauce names. But I don’t think I could inflict them on a child. Maybe Quain for a girl if I was a little mean…

hunger

Not so much for the Katniss factor. Everybody’s gonna have a Katniss, like all these small humans running around called Hermione. But I think Gale makes a fine boy’s name.

CityofBones

I just like the name Clary – it’s actually a normal name, especially compared to the others on this list, which makes sense as City of Bones is modern urban fantasy. (Make that, kick-ass modern urban fantasy!) Also Jace. Because Jace.

P&P

Again, Austen names are classic (see, I said this list wasn’t going to be all about inflicting childhood scars!). I’d love a Jane, or an Elizabeth, or an Anne – with the ‘e’ at the end. I insist! And I’m back and forth on whether a boy called Darcy is a bit cute or a bit awful – or a bit both…

gameboard

I’m reading the (freaking awesome) Gameboard of the Gods at the moment, and the Praetorian female protagonist, Mae, is just fantastic. Also Mae is a family name, so I could totally get away with that for real! The male lead, Justin, is pretty messed up and great too…

One Day

Because Dexter is a great name for a boy. Dammit, that’s a normal and boring reason. If it helps, I’d be reluctant to do this because of the TV show Dexter. Just a little too creepy for me…

Name of the Wind

Oh, well. Not really, I guess… But I TOTALLY want a kid called Kvothe because Kvothe and The Name of the Wind are both made of awesome and I’d like to think that’d rub off on the child lucky enough to bear his name. A girl called Kvothe might just work, don’t you think??

What names would you like to inflict on give to your future kids? Tell me all about it in the comments!

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Characters I Would Crush On If I Were Also A Fictional Character

top ten

Hosted by the awesome folks as The Broke and the Bookish, Top Ten Tuesdays is a weekly meme celebrating all things book.

This week, we’re talkin’ about book boyfriends. Those swoon-worthy guys that our favourite heroines get to ride off into the sunset with. Or perhaps the jilted suitor who loses out in a YA love triangle. These are the top ten characters I’d have a huge crush on if I were also a fictional character:

(This one is REALLY hard! Ten?! I only get ten crushes? WHAT MADNESS IS THIS?!)

SoM

Because like Nemo at the Moonlight Library, I love a badass who won’t compromise who they are to be with you, and loves you fiercely for who you are too.

CityofBones

Mmm. Jace Wayland. Cassandra Clare has a gift for writing slightly broken, slightly bad boys who I just want to look after. Dammit. I also want to sneak in a mention of Will Herondale, here, from Clare’s Infernal Devices series. I’m team Will all the way.

hunger

In Suzanne Collins world I’m a Peeta girl. He looks out for those he cares about but doesn’t let that stop Katniss being her own person (and a fairly awe-inspiring one at that).

fault

Augustus Waters. What a freaking sweetheart. He’s smart, considerate, irreverent, funny, and unflinchingly alive. One of the best book boys out there.

Vampire Academy

Dimitri Belikov. Who wouldn’t crush on this sexy, strong, and completely kickass Russian dhampir? I’ll take two!

Name of the Wind

I’ll let Kvothe introduce himself: “I have stolen princesses back from sleeping barrow kings. I burned down the town of Trebon. I have spent the night with Felurian and left with both my sanity and my life. I was expelled from the University at a younger age than most people are allowed in. I tread paths by moonlight that others fear to speak of during day. I have talked to Gods, loved women, and written songs that make the minstrels weep. My name is Kvothe. You may have heard of me.”  I say again: if you haven’t read The Name of the Wind, you are seriously missing out.

P&P

Because if you don’t think Fitzwilliam Darcy is one of the most crush-worthy characters of all time, then you’re wrong.

(On a related note, if you haven’t discovered the completely delightful adaptation of Pride and Prejudice called The Lizzie Bennet Diaries, head on over and check it out on YouTube. Just amazing!)

One Day

Dexter is far (far) from perfect. But he tries, even after failing once again. He keeps trying for Emma’s sake. That’s my kind of crush. (And this is a gorgeous, heartbreaking, wonderful book.)

gift

Cadvan is prickly, close to overwhelmed with the burdens he must bear, powerful, and so essentially good that it’s very hard to see him struggling. He’s not only Maerad’s saviour, but her mentor, her best friend, and her family. His devotion is so darn crush-worthy!

indigo

I didn’t want to double up on authors but couldn’t resist. Adrian‘s got issues, for sure. He’s also smart, brave, artistic, and incredibly loyal. I’d crush all over him.

Who are you guys crushing on? Do you like any of mine? (It’s okay if you don’t, less fictional competition for my fave fictional characters’ fictional affections can only be a good thing!) ~_^

Hit me up with your excellent TTT lists in the comments, lovelies!

Waiting on Wednesday: Gameboard of the Gods

New WoW

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly feature hosted over at Breaking the Spine, looking at upcoming books we bloggers are already obsessing about. This week, I’m eagerly anticipating Gameboard of the Gods, the first instalment in Richelle Mead’s forthcoming Age of X series for adults. It’s due for release in April… But if I’m very lucky I might be able to get an ARC from work or a friend who’s got an in before that. Fingers crossed!

I’m a fan of Mead’s Vampire Academy series as well as her spin-off series, Bloodlines. I haven’t been as fond of some of the adult paranormal Mead stuff I’ve read, but I’m intrigued by the concept of Gameboard of the Gods. And more Richelle Mead to tide me over until November and the release of Fiery Heart (Bloodlines book #4) can only be a good thing!

gameboard

In a futuristic world nearly destroyed by religious extremists, Justin March lives in exile after failing in his job as an investigator of religious groups and supernatural claims. But Justin is given a second chance when Mae Koskinen comes to bring him back to the Republic of United North America (RUNA). Raised in an aristocratic caste, Mae is now a member of the military’s most elite and terrifying tier, a soldier with enhanced reflexes and skills.

When Justin and Mae are assigned to work together to solve a string of ritualistic murders, they soon realize that their discoveries have exposed them to terrible danger. As their investigation races forward, unknown enemies and powers greater than they can imagine are gathering in the shadows, ready to reclaim the world in which humans are merely game pieces on their board.

Gameboard of the Gods, the first installment of Richelle Mead’s Age of X series, will have all the elements that have made her YA Vampire Academy and Bloodlines series such megasuccesses: sexy, irresistible characters; romantic and mythological intrigue; and relentless action and suspense.

(Synopsis from Goodreads.)

The Indigo Spell (Bloodlines Book 3) – by Richelle Mead

indigoAh! A long-awaited book arrives at last. Isn’t that the best feeling as a reader? I’m a huge Richelle Mead fan. Her Vampire Academy series is probably the best vampire-centric YA Fantasy around.

The Indigo Spell is the third instalment of her spin-off series, Bloodlines. Our protagonist is Sydney Sage, a member of a secret society called the Alchemists: sworn to protect humans from the vampires living amongst them. Bloodlines is (largely) the story of Sydney’s evolution.

This is also a story of magic and danger, friendship and love, secrets and high stakes. Initially, Sydney was only a facilitator, ensuring that her important Vampire charge, Jill Dragomir, wasn’t discovered by the wrong people. She never anticipated finding friends in the group she’d been assigned to, yet now she can’t imagine life without them (as reluctant as she may be to admit it).

Richelle Mead’s character development is one of my favourite things about her writing. She is consistent and plausible in allowing her creations to change – and to resist change. Each character gets this treatment to a degree, from Adrian and Jill, to Eddie and Angeline. In The Indigo Spell, Sydney Sage begins to realise how different she is in some aspects: and how she hasn’t altered in others. Who Can Say If I’ve Been Changed For the Better But, Because I Knew You:

The Golden Lily (Bloodlines Book 2) – by Richelle Mead

A few years ago I was reading a fair bit of Paranormal YA fiction, as you do. One of the books I picked up in spite of its somewhat cringeworthy title was Vampire Academy, by Richelle Mead. And I absolutely loved it. Since then I’ve read the entire Vampire Academy series and enjoyed them all immensely, so when Mead put out Bloodlines, the first book in a spin-off series using many of the characters I’d come to know in Vamp Academy, I naturally grabbed that too, and wasn’t disappointed. Now comes The Golden Lily, the second book in this new series. I read it over about three days – here’s what I thought of it:

 

Sydney, our protagonist, has always known that vampires are dangerous, unnatural and need to be contained for the good of the entire human race. She and her fellow Alchemists make it their sacred mission to keep vampires secret from humans, to keep people safe. The undead Strigoi would like nothing more than to kill and eat anyone they come into contact with. Even the living, ‘good’ vampires, the Moroi, rely on human blood to survive, and need to be kept within the bounds determined by their agreements with the Alchemists. Woman On A Mission:

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